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Published: 07/28/2006    print this story   email this story  

Jenne is Plaistow personified

By Michael Kelley

A human encyclopedia, a tap dancer extraordinaire, and quite possibly the most prolific clerk in New Hampshire history, Ruth Jenne knows everyone in Plaistow, and everyone in Plaistow adores Ruth.

Jenne has worked for the town for nearly half a century, beginning as town treasurer in 1957. She became the clerk for the selectmen in 1973, and now is known as the executive secretary for the selectmen. She has town reports dating back to the 1920s, when they were first available. Any time anyone has a question, they ask Ruth.

"She's so personable, and she remembers everyone and everything," said Rosemarie Bayek, tax collector for the town.

"That's the nature of the job, you pick up information as you work," said Jenne, who also has clerked for the Baptist church for nearly 20 years. "I've always been involved with the church."

Jenne has handled all sorts of questions over the years, although there is one subject she is asked about more than most.

"Trash pickup. Either what day pickup is or why someone's trash wasn't picked up. Just today I've had three calls about it," said Jenne, on a day when it wasn't even 1 o'clock yet.

Jenne isn't just an encyclopedia of Plaistow knowledge.

"I used to be in variety programs; I sang and tap danced," Jenne said. "One year my two daughters and seven grandchildren and I all did a number."

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